Ms. Schaafsma-Smith is an artist and arts educator with over 20 years experience. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Teaching Credential from the University of California, Riverside and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a passionate advocate for art and art education. Her autobiographical narrative art has been featured in one person and group exhibitions and is the public collections of UCR and UCLA. She has been the recipient of several prestigious awards, most recently Juror’s Award in Open Exhibition 2011, Ontario Museum of History and Art and First Prize in ACE 2011, Palm Springs Art Museum. In July 2011, she participated in Connecting Collections at the Guggenheim, Metropolitan, MoMA, and Whitney in New York City. She serves on the boards of the Stokoe Museum and Innovative Learning Center and the SCA Project Gallery. She lives and works in Riverside California.
Ever since I can remember I have loved art. I loved to draw and drew on everything. I explored this love and honed my artistic skills in a variety of media at Riverside City Collage (A.A.), University of California, Riverside (B.A.), and University of California, Los Angeles (M.F.A.). The theme of my work is narrative in nature. It is the visual story of the memories of my experiences.
My current work is in the medium of printmaking. I am specifically interested in exploring monotypes and monoprints (one-of-a-kind printed images). House Dress and House Call are monoprints on paper. The matrix (base) for these prints is a cardboard house shape that I discovered while unpacking school supplies. The matrix was rolled with soy-based ink and printed on rag paper by running both through a printing press. The prints were then embellished with additional materials.
House Dress was embellished with two pieces of printed silk tissue that were stitched together on a sewing machine. Additional rag paper was stitched to the house print paper in order to accommodate the sewn tissue. The two papers were joined together with tape. This print was inspired by the memory of my mother sewing extra fabric to clothing and letting out hems to accommodate growth.
In House Call the cardboard matrix was printed twice on the same paper. Red thread was sewn onto the paper to join the two images. This print is the memory of my courtship with my husband. We both lived in small, old, identical, but mirror image houses on the same street in downtown Riverside. We lived separately in our own houses for several years before meeting each other and making a connection.